James Yap gets back on track

Photo courtesy of PBA Images

As James Yap prepares for his return to the Philippine Basketball Association after being idle for about a year, the two-time league Most Valuable Player will also have to settle an unfinished business as one of Asia’s pioneering professional basketball league’s all-time best three-point shooters.

While on leave from the PBA to embark a career in politics, Yap was overtaken by LA Tenorio, the league’s Modern Day Iron Man, who has now assumed the No.3 spot in the all-time three-point shots made.

Yap wasn’t surprised his record as the previous third best on three-point shots made had been shattered by Tenorio, the veteran floor general of the Gin Kings.

Tenorio hasn’t missed a game since he started his playing career in the PBA nearly 17 years ago.

Tenorio now has 1,197 three-point shots compared to Yap’s 1,178 as of 14 December 2022.

Jimmy Alapag retired as No.1 in three-point shots made by the end of the 2016 season, making 1,401 and eclipsing the record once held by Allan Caidic, who hit 1,242.

For Yap, Tenorio’s feat was expected as he has played non-stop basketball.  He is set to play his 736th consecutive game in Game 5 of their Commissioner’s Cup best-of-seven championship series against Bay Area today.

“He didn’t stop playing,” said Yap in an exclusive interview with Daily Tribune. “It’s normal. I’ve been away from the game for so long, almost a year. LA continuously played and we know him, he can really knock down those treys.”

“But I don’t think about it (the record). I just want to play, but let’s see if I can continue to be in the race. We don’t know if there’s any record we can still achieve, but for me, that only serves as a bonus.”

Yap signed a new deal with Rain or Shine just recently and he looks forward playing for the team in the season-ending Governors’ Cup where he’ll be reunited with his long-time national team coach Yeng Guiao.

But this will be the first time Yap and Guiao will be on the same team in the PBA and they’re both excited being together again.

“I just want to contribute in the best possible way I can,” said Yap. “We have a lot of young players here who are talented as well, so if there’s an opportunity I can help them, that would be great.


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